Sale of ‘bath salts’ in Asheville: West Asheville merchant speaks out

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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Image: PBS/Mark Ryan

The complaints below from a local business owner are not the first I’ve seen about the impact of Asheville shops selling an amphetamine-like family of synthetic legal drugs usually sold as “bath salts.” The packets or containers of powder are labeled as not for human consumption, but are usually swallowed or snorted for the high.

Just a few weeks ago, a different business owner next to a shop that sold bath salts complained on Facebook, alleging sketchy patrons seeking bath salts next door harassed her customers and employees.

Now Shannon Covart of The Circle weighs in, saying that despite the fact that her store does not carry the product, bath-salt seekers greet her at the door as she opens her store, she is concerned for the welfare of her employees, and that she receives calls all day long for bath salts, especially from Tennessee, where the drugs are illegal.

What concerns do other business owners and residents have? And what’s being done to address the concerns around the sale of bath salts in Asheville?

From The Circle Asheville on Facebook:

Sunday Sermon: Why The Circle Asheville never has, never will, sell bath salts or any other synthetic drugs by Shannon Covart. Did you know that The Circle is the ONLY head shop in Asheville that does not sell bath salts? Being a small, independent, locally owned store I could make in a day what I make all month long if I started to sell this poison. But I genuinely love people, so I don’t. I struggle to make ends meet, but I can sleep at night knowing I’m not causing harm and destroying lives. I get free samples in the mail every week with literature about how much money I could be making. I throw that crap in the garbage, but I could sell it for $35-$50 a pop. (Hey Zombies, stay out of my TRASH!) Sometimes these bath salt seeking people are waiting for me to open my doors, I recognize their crazed look right away, and I send them away before I even open my doors. I’m actually concerned about the welfare of my employees, I don’t want them to have to deal with these people. We get calls all day long, mostly from Tennessee where its illegal, asking for these products. A little online research will quickly fill you with horror stories. This stuff is completely unregulated, its marked “Not for Human Consumption”. Tests have shown that one pack can have anywhere from 20 milligrams to 20,000 milligrams of MDPV, a common chemical in this stuff. This is why one person can have a mild effect and the next can end up in the psych ward. Side effects include horrible hallucinations, super human strength that makes you feel invincible, suicide, trying to rip off your own body parts, severe paranoia, & zombie-like tenancies. Other long lasting, maybe permanent effects, are a lot like having Parkinson’s. Do a little research, ask any law enforcement or ER worker what they are seeing, or stand outside the Octopus Garden at 10am, right when they open their doors. Please don’t try this stuff! Make some hippie, artsy, music loving friends and go natural if your seeking a high. Stay save and know that The Circle loves you. Check out this article for a overview. Peace & Love!

Link to comments on Covart’s post on the Circle Asheville page here. (Despite her statement that The Circle is the only area smoke shop not to sell bath salts, The Circle is not the only smoke shop in Asheville where bath salts are not for sale.)


Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

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  1. XRumerTest July 19, 2017

    Hello. And Bye.

  2. Oliver October 17, 2012

    I just met you,
    And this is crazy!
    Here’s some bath salts,
    Your face is tasty!

  3. jzara October 15, 2012

    Kudos to The Circle and every other shop taking a stand on this.

  4. Eric October 15, 2012

    Good for The Circle. I am pretty sure Wonderland has made the same decision. Some things are more important than profits.

  5. Concerned Citizen October 15, 2012

    NC has got to make this stuff illegal! How can retailers sell such poison and make so much money knowing they are causing such harm to so many. Bravo to the Circle and Wonderland who will not sell this crap and “Those Asheville Head Shops” who we will not name that do sell this poison and make so much $$$$$$ should be ashamed of themselves.
    We need to make this illegal!
    How do we make this illegal?

    1. mike October 17, 2012

      They’re already illegal in North Carolina. Senate Bill 7 (AN ACT TO ADD MEPHEDRONE, METHYENEDIOXYPROVALERONE AND CERTAIN DERIVATIVES OF 2-AMINO-1-PHENYL-1-PROPANONE, AND SYNTHETIC CANNABINOIDS TO THE LIST OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES.) was ratified by the legislature and signed by the governor in March 2011.

  6. Greg October 15, 2012

    Wonderland on Patton does NOT sell bath salts and NEVER will.


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